Fame or greatness

Kansas City Star columnist Lewis Diuguid has been getting mail from his readers suggesting it is past time for Maya Angelou to have a bust in the Hall of Famous Missourians at the Capitol. It sure is. It’s also time another major African-American literary figure from Missouri gets one, too–Langston Hughes of Joplin.
Bill Williams, who has provided more of the busts for the Hall than anybody else, has been an advocate for Hughes and for St. Louis-born Nobel laureate T. S. Eliot.
All three should have been in the Hall of Famous Missourians long ago, long before Bob Barker and Rush Limbaugh, Ginger Rogers, Betty Grable, John Ashcroft, and Warren Hearnes to name a few. Politicians come and go. Entertainers become answers to trivia questions.
But the words of great writers inspire for generations.
However, as has been pointed out, it is the Hall of FAMOUS Missourians, not the Hall of GREAT Missourians.
This scribe, who was part of the events that created the Hall of Famous Missourians, sometimes wonders if choosing to honor those who are only famous short-changes a future that should seek in the Hall the inspiration to reach for greatness.

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